The Pacific shore

The last few days of our trip to CA, we visited the Pacific Ocean for the first time.

After we left the winery, we drove to the marina in Oceanside with the thought of possibly renting a sailboat. We watched gigantic waves crash with a loud thundering crescendo over the breakwater. We saw a sailboat raise its main sail, get to the breakwater, then turn back around only to lower its sail again. We were out of our element. We decided it would be too risky.

I also thought that I could go surfing for the first time. I was afraid of sharks and sting rays, but frankly maybe I was afraid of the wrong things. When we arrived at the beach in Carlsbad, the waves crashing into the shore were above our heads. Just standing on the shore when the waves came in caused enough force to knock me down. I decided to watch Paul on the boogie board first before I attempted to do it myself. Then I saw a big wave crash Paul’s body into the ground like he weighed nothing.

Again, we felt out of our element. Those waves were for experienced surfers, not first timers. I also thought that I could swim in the water. No one was doing that. It would have been difficult to get past the waves.

Alcoholic beverages were not allowed on the beach. I thought that was strange. I don’t think that I have ever been on a beach in Wisconsin where people weren’t drinking. Maybe it would be different if our summers were year round. The warm sunny summer weekends are like holidays here. They don’t happen often enough.

Another thing I noticed about the town of Carlsbad was that it was very pedestrian friendly. They had a nice running track. Also, when pedestrians crossed the street they pushed a button that turned on a yellow flashing yield light. All of the traffic stopped to allow pedestrians to cross. The first few times, I ran across as fast as I could and waved a little sorry wave. Pedestrians cross at their own risk at home.

While we were in Carlsbad, we stayed at the Pelican Cove Bed & Breakfast. The owner, Nancy, was very helpful. She made excellent breakfasts and gave us little tips about where to eat and what to do. The room was not air conditioned, nor did it need to be. We left the windows open at night. It did get a little loud. Quite a few trains traveled through town.

The houses in Carlsbad were very close together. From our room, we could see into the house next door. We could smell their cooking and hear them talk. That is a bit unusual in WI. Even in Milwaukee, where the houses are close together, people at least have a small yard to mow. Some people didn’t have a yard there at all. There wasn’t a feeling of privacy, but that didn’t seem to matter.

We also noticed that Carlsbad is a very dog friendly town. People take their dogs with them everywhere. We saw more people with dogs than kids. We were at several restaurants where there were dogs inside. People in WI leave their dogs at home. I have never seen a dog in a restaurant here unless it was a service dog. A man next to us in the restaurant told us that he had his dog genetically tested to see what his pedigree was. How unusual.

Someday, I hope to go back. It was a lovely place.

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